Chargen: Skills

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General Overview

Skills represent general areas of expertise and learning. Most are general - they are designed to represent the major areas of human activity and endeavor, without requiring players to keep track of hundreds of very specific Skills. Skills are an indication of areas that you've studied, trained in, or have a natural aptitude for. You should interpret your Skills more specifically than the game system does. For instance, the Artistry Skill encompasses all visual arts, but your individual character may be a painter rather than a sculptor.

Each Skill has a numeric rating that reflects your facility and experience with that Skill. This is called a Skill Level. Skill Levels range from 0 to 10. A person with a low language Skill Level knows a few phrases in that tongue. A person with a high language Skill Level can easily carry on a conversation with a native speaker of that tongue. The description for each skill includes a chart that indicates general levels of knowledge at each Skill Level.

How are Skills Used?

Your character's Skills may not come into play during every game session, but they are used in several ways:

  • The Skills you select help define and detail your character. No one is good at everything, and that gives characters a reason to work together, giving their players more role-play opportunities.
  • Your Skills serve as a guide to what to role-play when you aren't sure what your character would do in a situation. Take a situation where a group of characters is being faced down by an angry mob. The character who has Stealth might try and sneak away. A character with Music might try to pacify the crowd with a song. The character with Acting may try to pretend she's someone else the crowd's not interested in.
  • Skills can help resolve conflict situations when people can't agree through discussion. An example might be a situation where one character is disguised and another character claims s/he's penetrated the disguise. They could do a Skill Check on Disguise and Awareness to determine whether or not the disguise is revealed if they can't come to an agreement in any other way.
  • People can also use Skill Checks to add a random element to a situation rather than predetermining everything. For example, say a group of characters are having a competition to see who can best climb a steep wall. They could do an Athletics Check to see who wins the game.
  • Coded commands such as the combat system use your Skill Levels, together with the appropriate Statistic, to determine results. For example, the combat system uses your Dodge Skill and Quickness Statistic to determine whether you can jump out of the way of an attack

What are Skill Packs?

Skill packs are the minimum proficiency requirements for certain character types; such as Aes Sedai, Children of the Light, or the Cairhienin Guard. Some groups may require that players take a certain skill set in order to roleplay their character.

  • Skill packs are designed to use one command to select the appropriate skill set for a character type, rather than several commands individually to select the skills a player may need for their character.
  • Skill packs ensure that a player gets all the necessary skills required for a character type the first time around, appropriately adjusting skill points to reflect the points spent for that set.
  • Skill packs take into account the freebies already given to players for their culture and/or socio-economic background, only charging them for the next skill level as necessary.
  • People can also use Skill Checks to add a random element to a situation rather than predetermining everything. For example, say a group of characters are having a competition to see who can best climb a steep wall. They could do an Athletics Check to see who wins the game.
  • For example: Mary has Politics of 2 for being a Cairhienin and a Noble, but the AS-BLUE skill pack requires a Politics of 3. Mary is only charged 3 skill points, rather than the required 6 to raise her Politics skill to 3.

See Skill Packs for a list of packs and required skills.

Raising Skills After Character Generation

As you play your character, s/he will have new experiences that would equate to learning new Skills, and will practice existing Skills that could increase in Levels.

The Experience Points you earn are used to learn new Skills and improve existing ones. You can spend these Experience Points to improve Skills at any time. It may also be possible to improve your Skills in other ways. For example, some training programs in various areas and organizations could result in improved skills.

(NOTE: More information will be added on this subject at a future date.)

Additional Skill Related Topics

Skill Modifiers Skill modifiers: Bonuses and Penalties
Choosing Skills things to consider when choosing your Skills
Combat Skills a note on combat Skills and death, PLEASE READ
Skill Packs minimum proficiency requirements for varying character types
Skill Rules info for setting your Skills in chargen
Skill List a list of the available Skills
Skill Charts general info on the skill charts included in skill descs
Experience Points information on Experience Points
Purchasing Assets information on purchasing Assets with Experience Points
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